• Question: what would happen if one of your lungs died but the other still worked? would you still be able to live for a while or would you die instantly?why?

    Asked by dukeshepherd to Ben, Clare, Ezzy, Mario, Sam on 21 Mar 2012.
    • Photo: Elizabeth Pearson

      Elizabeth Pearson answered on 21 Mar 2012:

      People regularly have one lung removec and are resonablly ok. A mate of mine collapsed one of his lungs and he didn’t even realise for 3 days!

    • Photo: Mario Campanelli

      Mario Campanelli answered on 21 Mar 2012:

      yes, you can certainly live without a lung, but it will affect your sport performance!

    • Photo: Sam Vinko

      Sam Vinko answered on 21 Mar 2012:

      You’d be fine, although it wouldn’t be all that comfortable.

      Our lungs evolved to suit a rather more sporty kind of human who needed a lot more oxygen, running around catching food and escaping from predators. So where we are currently, sitting at desks and in offices most of the time, doesn’t quite use up all the capabilities our body has – the lungs your gifted with are slightly redundant, and you could make due with half. Loosing a lung some 20.000 years ago though would probably shorten your life span considerably.